Treatment of sleep disorders in children with developmental disabilities.
Sleep disorders in children with developmental disabilities are a common and frequently disruptive behavioral concern. In the present-study, four children with developmental disabilities (two of the children exhibited frequent night wakings and two had bedtime disturbances) were treated using a multiple baseline across subjects design. Sleep diaries were used to monitor changes in each child's sleep throughout treatment. Establishment of a consistent bedtime routine combined with a graduated extinction procedure for nighttime behavior problems resulted in a decrease in night wakings for two children (a 7-year-old girl and an 11-year-old boy) and a decrease in bedtime disturbances for two children (a 2-year-old girl and a 12-year-old boy). This series of interventions highlights the heterogeneity of maintaining variables in sleep disorders and the effectiveness of relatively simple behavioral interventions for the treatment of night wakings and bedtime disturbances in children with autism and other developmental disabilities.
Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps
Durand, V.M., Gernert-Dott, P., & Mapstone, E. (1996). Treatment of sleep disorders in children with developmental disabilities. Journal of The Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps, 21, 114-122.
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